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Corrections to data on the working poor


BLS discovered errors in some estimates in the Profile of the Working Poor series of reports. Three types of errors were discovered that affected data for numerous years.

First, there was an error in the classification of individuals who were at the poverty level. These individuals should have been included in the estimates for “at or above poverty level” but instead were included in estimates for “below poverty level.” This error affected all tables in all working poor reports with data through 2012. The effect of this error on the estimates was very minor, and BLS did not revise the estimates.

The second and third errors occurred in estimates of poverty status by occupation. These errors affected table 4 of reports for the 2002–2012 period. The table was intended to show poverty status by occupation of the longest job held during the year but instead was programmed to show poverty status by occupation of the most recent job. In addition, table 4 was intended to show poverty status of those in the labor force for 27 weeks or more who worked during the year, but instead did not restrict the estimates to people who worked.

The effects of the errors in estimates of poverty status by occupation in table 4 were more substantial. In April 2015, BLS reissued the reports for 2002–2012 with revised versions of table 4 that correctly show persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more who worked during the year by occupation of longest job held. The reissued reports are available below.


A Profile of the Working Poor, with corrected data for table 4 (PDF)

 

Last Modified Date: April 15, 2015